A woman from Crawford County has agreed to plead guilty to a single felony count of Second-degree Burglary, in connection with a double homicide last month near Deloit, Iowa. The Omaha World-Herald says in her plea agreement, 36-year old Erika M. Dains, of Denison, also plead guilty Thursday in Crawford County District Court, to being an accessory after the fact. Dains had originally been charged with two counts of first-degree murder and one count of first-degree arson in connection with the March 10th murders of Marvin Huelsing and Alice Huisenga on Huelsing’s property southeast of Deloit. Her two co-defendants, 19-year old Jayden Ray Chapman and 26-year old Michael David Schenk, both of Denison, have pleaded not guilty to murder and arson charges.
According to court records, Chapman told law enforcement officials that he, Schenk and Dains had gone to the farmstead to steal scrap metal. According to a complaint and affidavit filed earlier in Crawford County District Court, Chapman said he and Schenk shot Huelsing and Huisenga and then set fire to a trailer with the victims inside. As part of the plea agreement, Dains agreed to testify for the prosecution at her co-defendants’ trials.
The original charges against Dains were dropped without prejudice, which means the prosecution can refile the charges if Dains violates the terms of the plea agreement. All three have been held in the Crawford County Jail in Denison on $500,000 cash-only bail since their arrest March 13th. Thursday’s plea agreement stipulated that Dains’ bail continue as previously set.
In pleading guilty, Dains agreed to prison terms of 10 years on the burglary charge and two years on the accessory charge. A determination will be made at sentencing whether Dains must serve the terms one after the other, for a total of 12 years, or at the same time, for a total of 10 years. Sentencing for Dains will not occur until after the cases against Schenk and Chapman are concluded.